Read: Psalm 145; Psalm 84:4
Psalm 145 is the only one of the 150 psalms (Hebrew tehillim = praises) which is actually entitled in Hebrew “A Praise.” Psalm 145 was regarded by many Jewish commentators as distilling the essence of all the Psalms. Significantly, in Hebrew the psalm contains exactly 150 words. The Talmud regards the alphabetical versification of the Psalm as symbolic of the psalm being as essential as the alphabet, and containing an orderly program showing how to ascend towards God. In Jewish liturgy Psalm 145 is always introduced by the reading of Psalm 84:4 (v.5 in Hebrew) – “Blessed are those who dwell in Your house, ever singing Your praise.” Psalm 145 is thus regarded as the ultimate example of how to sing praise to God.
Think About It: What are some examples in Psalm 145 of how the Psalm “distills the essence” of other psalms?
Prayer: Lord, help me to be always growing closer to You.
Read: Psalm 145:1 – 2; Job 2:10, 13:15; 1 Thessalonians 5:17 -18
In Psalm 145:1 the psalmist expresses the personal nature of His relationship with God: the Lord is his God and His sovereign. This way of speaking foreshadows the way we speak of our “Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.” A saving relationship with God requires a personal knowledge of God and an acknowledgement of God’s sovereignty over our lives.
Think About It: What is the difference between “knowing about God” and “knowing God”? How is a personal knowledge of God different from knowledge of theology? In Psalm 145:2, the psalmist vows to praise God forever. The Jewish commentators on this verse note that idolaters praise their god when they prosper, but curse that same god when they suffer. How do the Scripture references for today from Job and 1 Thessalonians speak about this issue? Do I praise God, no matter what?
Prayer: Lord, help me to give thanks and praise You in all circumstances.
Read: Psalm 145:3- 7; Isaiah 63:7; Ephesians 1:19 – 20, 3:20; 1 Timothy 1:14
Psalm 145:3 asserts that the greatness of God’s works is immeasurable. Psalm 145:4 speaks to the importance of an intergenerational witness to the greatness of God.
Think About It: According to Ephesians 1:19 – 20, what is the greatest example of the mighty works of God? Why is an intergenerational witness to the greatness of God so important? How can I hear a witness to God’s greatness from generations long past? Why might it be important for an older present day generation to hear from a younger generation about the greatness of God? What are some of the aspects of God about which I am to meditate and speak according to Psalm 145:5 – 7?
Prayer: Lord, help me to be a faithful witness to other generations about Your greatness.
Read: Psalm 145:8 – 10; Exodus 34:6; Numbers 14:18; Psalm 86:15; Psalm 103:5; Romans 11:32 – 33
Psalm 145:8 – 10 directs us to the very essence of God for which we should praise Him – that aspect of God which is greater than all His works, namely, His mercy.
Think About It: Why is God’s mercy greater than all of His works? Why is God’s mercy important to me? How are God’s saints supposed to respond to God’s mercy? What makes a person a “saint”?
Prayer: Lord, I praise You for Your mercy; I need it!
Read: Psalm 145:11 – 13; Daniel 2:44:4:3
Psalm 145:11 – 13 tells us to praise God for His kingdom. In Daniel’s prophecy we learn that God’s kingdom will supplant all the kingdoms of this world. Daniel confirmed that God’s kingdom is eternal.
Think About It: What might distract me from perceiving God’s kingdom and praising Him for it (1 John 2:15 – 16)? What is the spiritual reality of my current situation, if I am a Christian? (Ephesians 2:5 – 6; Hebrews 12:22 – 24)? What is my destiny as a Christian (Luke 12:32)?
Prayer: Lord, I praise you for Your glorious and eternal kingdom!
Read: Psalm 145:14 – 16; Psalm 146:8; Luke 1:50 – 53; Psalm 104:27, 136:25; Matthew 6:26
Psalm 145:14 – 16 directs us to praise God for His providence, which involves the mercy that He displays toward His creation.
Think About It: How is God’s providence described in Psalm 145:14 – 16? How have I experienced God’s providence in my life?
Prayer: Lord, thank You for lifting me up and providing for me.
Read: Psalm 145:17 – 20
Psalm 145:17 – 20 directs us to praise God for His mercy and salvation. In these verses God’s kindness is reaffirmed. We are given His promises: to be near us; to have our desire fulfilled in Him; that He will hear our cry; that He will save us and preserve us.
Think About It: What does it mean to call upon God in truth (John 4:23 – 24; Hebrews 4:16)? What does it mean to fear God (Hebrews 12:28 – 29)? Why, if God already knows everything, does He tell me to cry out to Him and tell Him my needs (Jeremiah 33:3)? God promises to preserve those who love Him. How should I show my love to God, according to Jesus (John 14:15)?
Prayer: Lord, I call upon You on the basis of the shed blood and perfect merit of the Lord Jesus Christ, and not on the basis of any merit of my own.